Saturday, December 5, 2015

Week 17: The Field is Yellow Already to Harvest

Hey everyone! It's been another solid week here in Ubon! On Tuesday, my district got to help out some of the members in the ward harvest rice. It was so much fun! We got to their place and they had lunch all set up for us. We ate and went straight to the rice fields to start picking. The harvest season only lasts a short time so they needed all the help they could get. If you guys remember in my email a few weeks ago, I was confused how they were able to harvest rice out of grass/ Anyway, it turns out that the rice just grows of the ends of the grass and when they're ready to be harvested, they start to drop down a little. Basically, their like grapes on a grape branch thing. They gave us knives to cut down the grass and we would stack them in piles on the ground for them to collect later. Not gonna lie, it was hard work in the sun, but worth it for sure. We're going again on Saturday because another one of the members really needs help harvesting. And yes, I basically look like a rice farmer out in the fields so I'd say I blend in pretty nicely.

Other than that, we were able to teach a lot of lessons this week. Our investigators are doing well and the work in general is moving forward. We've been focusing on our recent converts and less-actives lately. They're all great people, they just need a little nudge here and there so they stay on the right path. We want them to all be at church more often, so we do our best to support them and help them feel the Spirit. This, in return, gives them a desire to get to church. I think supporting them, along with all the members here is so important. This week, I've started a new thing where I try to get an investigator, member, less-active, etc to come eat with us. I try to find someone different everyday. It sounds dumb, but I think it actually makes a pretty big difference. It helps us get to know the people better and it allows them to trust us more. We can see how they're doing personally and ask for referrals etc. It also allows me to practice speaking Thai for an extra hour so that's a plus too. I've started an "idea book" as well. Every time I find a scripture I like, I'll write it down in this book. Every time I find a quote I like, I'll write it down. I write down things I need to remember as a missionary and I write down things that help me become a better person. In this sense, I can always go back and read through things I've written down rather than just forgetting what I've learned. I encourage you all to start one. Just find a small notepad and keep it with you everywhere you go. It'll bless your life just as it has for mine. 

One last thing that I found this week that I want to share with you guys. The word for "convert" in Thai is ผู้เปลียนใจเลือมใส (phuuplianncaylxamsay). It's a very long word, that's for sure. Anyway, the direct translation of this word means "someone who changes their heart in a way as to believe in something whole-heartedly, being thoroughly convinced in that belief". I think that's who a convert really is. A convert isn't someone who goes to church every Sunday and does what their supposed to because they grew up in the church, it's someone that truly believes and lives the gospel to the best of their ability. Thai is seriously the coolest language. I learn more about the gospel and I learn more of the language. Hope you all have a great week! Omni 1:26.

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